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Everything posted by Islandbound

  1. Several weeks ago I took my kids, 9 and 12 along with two other boys of the same age to swim in a mostly protected cove behind a limestone breakwater. The water there ranges from zero depth during very low tides to about 1.5m in a high tide. After several hours there one of the boys came back to shore and told me he had seen a blue-ring octopus around the rocks where they were swimming. The kids came back in and we left for the day. Yesterday I suited up and went looking with camera in hand during high tide to see what I could find. Its worth mentioning that this is a very popular swim spot with kids during the summer months. I quickly found the usual scorpionfish and cone shells but couldnt locate a blue-ring. After looking for a half hour or so I spotted something in a meter of water or so and moved in to identify it. What a surprise! Totally unburied, probably from the storm surge we have had for the last several days was a relic from WWII and the Battle of Okinawa dead in the middle of this popular swimming area next to houses and apartments. Just goes to show you that you never really know what you will find... The shore shot is from when I poked my head up to locate the area for the ordinance disposal people but it also shows how close I was to shore and peoples houses.
  2. Leslie, My wife found this urchin with the madreporite visible. This is the first one we have seen with what appears to be the orofice on the top exposed. Are we right in assuming this is where the seawater passes through to the urchin?
  3. This guy was hanging onto this slender "thread" about 15cm below a ledge, anyone have an idea what kind of behaviour this is? I am assuming these are snails. Is there anyway to identify what kind they are and if they are toxic or poisonous? Last of the critter questions... there is a fine "net" extending out from this trapdoor. What is it? Finally, the worm picture. This worm was literally reaching out into the current waving his "arms" around looking for something. Just wanted to post a pic of a worm for you Leslie! By the way, my wife found this one and has been looking for worms for you. Hope to get some pics soon!
  4. Thanks for the feedback! After reading both of your replies I went back out and tried to find some of the same fish/corals but there was so much silt in the water I gave up before I was successful. What exactly makes for a good composition for a nudibranch or slug? Is it the positioning of the animal against the background and/or lighting or is it trying to catch the animal in a natural pose that shows an activity or action? Admittedly, I usually focus on slower moving animals and fish as I have very few seconds to get a photo freediving. Is this a "composed" photo? Is this one "composed" or is it even interesting?
  5. A couple of days ago I went out into an area where there are generally hooks and lines aplenty, enough that its wise to be cautious about getting snagged by avid shore fisherman. Anyway, not 10 feet into the water from the shore an entire school of 6" squid waited for us and led us deeper where we found a couple of nice things to enjoy on a dusk swim. If anyone has any comments on lighting, composition change, better angle, please "tear it up". I really want to know how to become a better photo taker and would really welcome constructive criticism. Anyway, here are two photos from then.
  6. Looks like a Spiny Devilfish (Inimicus didactylus) to me.
  7. After looking at the photos from last night I think these might be two different species of Aplysia parvula. The coloration on the head is different and the banding of the wavy things on the back is also different. Version One: And version two, this one has spacing between his back wavy-things and this coloration is very different:
  8. I also have tried to use a D80 at f22, ISO 100 and all my images come out black. I always thought that I would have to have two strobes to provide enough light for that small of an aperture.
  9. Wow! Love the shots!! The colors and angles look fantastic to me, but then consider the source...! :-)
  10. Thanks Leslie! You are truly the Queen of Creatures! Somewhere I have photos I took of the abalone from above and from other angles that I dumped onto a remote drive but cant locate. I take about 500-800photos a week and dont end up processing them all but do save them. Not sure what I save them for, but I do save them. If I find the shell photos I will post them, if memory serves me correctly it was a very small shell compared to the size of the animal and there is NO way it would fit into the shell. One more question Leslie, we are certain that the abalone was following us with its vision. How well can this abalone see underwater and is it a vision like a bug or a human? It moved its head to better see us when we around it and you can see this in the photo with my wife, it was looking up at her. The frontal shot shows the abalone moving its head to locate the camera lens with one eye. I was not used to this from a creature like this and it was kind of creepy.
  11. I took these on AV mode or aperture priority and the strobe was on TTL. Recently I ordered another arm to begin to use a second strobe I have (YS110) to get more light on the subject (is that a bad pun?). Are you using all your strobe then on manual mode? What is the purpose of fill light as compared to the higher powered strobe, isnt it the same? Here are two more where I was unable to get the light onto the crab as intended. Does anyone make a ring-flash type strobe for underwater use? Its frustrating to spend so much time on shots and then find them to be so badly exposed.
  12. Domonique, your photos are GREAT! Very nice in color and sharp. What settings did use on the camera?
  13. When I first saw it lying on the bottom I thought it was a gecko arm ... It is really small.
  14. Lndr, are you using two strobes then? How do you get enough space for both light paths to illuminate the subject? Also, are you using a 105mm lens to be able to "stand off" a bit to give yourself more room for the lighting?
  15. I tried to do the offset shot but I cannot seem to figure out how to do the lighting. It is very hard to shoot through the arms of the coral to start with but the lighting issues...arrgh. Sometimes I wish I could use a flashlight to point along the lens direction to light things with. This is what typically happens when I try to do something creative, the image comes out blacked out.
  16. I see it has the frills on the back of course but it has two sets of stalks on the head area like a snail or slug. Is this a nudibranch or something more common? Also, is this a Nudibranch or a worm? sorry for the incredibly bad photo but I had just started taking UW pictures in March of this year when I took this one.
  17. Would it be better to have a picture where the crab is more out of focus to try and get some of the coral polyps into the pictures like this: or to back out even more like this shot? My goal is to enter a picture for a very small, no prize-just for fun local contest in the area. I picked the crabs because I like to watch them scurry around the corals when I am out.
  18. Make sure you make a template of the required pattern first with notebook paper etc to fit the casing. The just lay the paper on the velcro and make the final cuts.
  19. Probably a dumb question but is this a starfish thats regenerating its whole body?
  20. This crab is wedged in tightly down between long arms of acropora coral and I dont know how to get the coral into any better focus. The fstop was at 13 as I only have one strobe and kept blacking out the exposure when I changed it. I am hoping to enter a very local and very amateur photo contest in the macro category (or creature) and I really like these little crabs. Is there a better way to capture these little guys? No matter how many shots I take at the angles where I can see them I cannot get the coral into focus. Is this considered bad?
  21. I took my new 60mm Nikon lens and D80 out for the first time today so forgive me if the photos arent that great! I saw this little tiny fish flitting about on this coral and so I set up to try and get a photo of him in action. As I set up the little fish obliged and lay facing me on the coral very nicely for a good shot. Looking through the Ikelite viewfinder port I saw a quick flash of silvery-white moving toward the fish from behind through the coral as the fish lay facing me. It was a crab! In a split second a life and death struggle ensued with the crab overpowering the fish and making off with a nice sashimi lunch. I was stunned. In a matter of a couple of seconds my little outing with a friendly fish definately took a turn for the worst for the poor fish, of course the crab was happy! The crab here had just grabbed the fish and the fish was twisting to get away.... Still trying to get away the fish looked at me and made me feel guilty...
  22. Gerard, can you post a pic where the entire strobe arm and the focus light attachment is visible? I would like to see how the clamp and arm arrangement look. Ultralight makes a clamp for the Q40 I have but I want to see how it might look first.
  23. I am glad your strobe survived! Did you find any reason that it failed?
  24. Thanks for the input! Unfortunately it will be a couple of days till I go try it out in the water as there is a big storm on the coast, at least its not a typhoon... yet.
  25. On the side of the 60mm is the choice of LIMIT/FULL. Which one is best to use and why?
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